SETI Ponders the Silence

first_imgSince no clear signals from space aliens have yet arrived in 40 years of looking, SETI thinkers are asking why.  They’re coming up with a variety of explanations.  Here are three possibilities from recent articles.Too Soon to Tell.  Seth Shostak of the SETI Institute, writing in the September cover story of Astronomy Magazine, isn’t ready to call it a failure.  He gives the standard SETI response that we’re unsuccessful so far because the search has only just begun.  Considering the number of stars to search, it may take centuries to cover the sky adequately.  Sagan, Drake and others knew this and have been saying it all along.  But new technologies are rapidly accelerating the search for extraterrestrial intelligence, and could give us an answer within 20 years.  So remain optimistic, he says, and stay tuned to the stellar radio dial.Narrow Window.  Frank Drake, SETI pioneer and author of the Drake Equation, surmises that the parameter L (lifetime of an intelligent civilization) may be the most telling factor, but it needs to be qualified by our recent human experience, according to an article on New Scientist August 4.  Detectability was predicated on an assumption that radio “leakage” from earth would be visible to aliens, and vice versa.  Our own leakage has dropped significantly, however, since cable TV and direct-broadcast satellites became popular.  This means that when the last “I Love Lucy” broadcasts reach the aliens watching from a distant star, the earth may appear to go silent.  The bad news is that maybe advanced civilizations only have a narrow window of time during which they would broadcast radio toward us, either on purpose or inadvertently through broadcast leakage.  The good news is that SETI researchers don’t necessarily have to be discouraged at the silence.  Perhaps a switch to optical SETI (searching for laser beacons) can fill in the gaps.Look Up, Look Down.  Aussie astrobiologist Paul Davies, never shy about proposing ideas “at the extreme end of the spectrum of speculation,” has a new detection strategy.  If aliens were trying to send us a message, radio would be a wasteful method, he claims in an August 10 piece in the Sydney Morning Herald.  Why would aliens keep radio beacons going for centuries with little hope of them being detected?  Leaving artifacts like plaques or big chunks of metal, on the other hand, would incur horrendous shipping costs, with no guarantee they would survive millions of years of erosion or burial.  Get ready for his surprise solution, as he role-plays the alien messengers in council:The ideal solution would be to encode the message inside a large number of self-replicating, self-repairing microscopic machines programmed to multiply and adapt to changing conditions.    Fortunately such machines already exist: they are called living cells.Although this sounds uncannily like an argument used by Intelligent Design scientists,* Davies means something very different.  That he’s not talking about evidence for a Creator God is clear from his next sentence: “The cells in our bodies, for example, contain genetic messages written by Mother Nature billions of years ago.”  Like any good Darwinist, he believes cells and their genomes evolved in the usual Darwinian way.  But, he speculates, aliens might have left messages in the so-called “junk DNA.”  (See 06/03/2004 headline).  He proposes, therefore, that SETI researchers should turn their attention to hidden messages in the large, non-coding regions of our own genomes: “There is plenty of room there for ET to etch a molecular message without damaging any vital genetic functions,” he claims, particularly because “scientists in the United States have discovered whole chunks of human and mouse junk DNA that seem to have remained virtually unchanged for tens of millions of years.”  (See 05/27/2004 headline.)  Those regions would be good places to store messages, he thinks, kind of like how we encoded messages in radio beams and on the Voyager record.  What about the shipping cost?  His tale gets curioser and curioser.  Since viruses can insert genes into a host cell, “An alien civilisation could, for negligible cost, dispatch tiny packages across the galaxy, loaded with customised viral DNA.”  We might just find that “The truth is inside us.”*ID scientists have argued that if intelligence can be detected in coded messages from space, why cannot intelligent design be detected in coded messages within living cells?  For example, see “Is Intelligent Design Testable?” by William A. Dembski on www.arn.org.Welcome to the SETI Bizarre (intentional spelling), where a rainbow of imaginative speculations is colorfully displayed and dished out on the cheap.  The Bizarre is popular because of all the free advertising provided by the gullible media.  Isn’t science thrilling?  Too bad those church-going fundamentalist types operate only on faith.    Remember an old childhood prank?  A smart aleck walks up to a gullible kid and gets him to follow his hand: “Look up.  Look down.  Look at my thumb.  Gee, you’re dumb.”  Try it on the next astrobiologist you meet, except with the following interpretive expansion: Look up (at the heavens, the anthropic universe, and the cosmic order).  Look down (at the earth, the lithology, the biosphere, and the improbable convergence of parameters that makes life possible).  Look at my thumb (biology, anatomy, physiology, and all the molecular machines, organs and integrated systems that make muscular motion and vision function nearly instantaneously, and the consciousness that gives sense to the observations).  Astoundingly, you appear philosophically challenged and willfully ignorant (if you think this all just happened by chance).  Which leads to a suggested revision of the Davies proverb: not, “the truth is inside us,” but rather: “the thumbprint of the Truth is inside us.”(Visited 15 times, 1 visits today)FacebookTwitterPinterestSave分享0last_img read more

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Eskom’s dollar bond in high demand

first_img24 January 2011 Eskom’s 10-year, US$1.75-billion bond – aimed solely at international investors – has been more than two-and-a-half times oversubscribed, says Public Enterprises Minister Malusi Gigaba, calling it a sign of investor confidence in South Africa. “The oversubscription on the bond issuance demonstrates international investors’ confidence in Eskom and the South African government,” Gigaba said in Pretoria last week. “This is Eskom’s first dollar bond issue, and the pricing is extremely attractive for us,” Dames said. “It has been facilitated by the government’s strong support for Eskom, and we are within the cost of funding target set by Eskom’s regulators.” “We welcome the confidence that international investors have shown in Eskom,” said Eskom CEO Brian Dames, adding that the offer was “an important part of our funding programme. The proceeds will be used to fund our committed capital expansion programme, and so help to keep the lights on for all South Africans. The oversubscription follows roadshows conducted in the US, UK and Europe. The US$1.75-billion (about R12.3-billion) bond is only available to foreigners, and may not be sold to investors in South Africa. Funding capital expansioncenter_img Gigaba said the government’s support of Eskom had helped to lower the utility’s risk profile and had provided the foundation for Eskom once more to be able to raise funding off its own balance sheet. Source: BuaNews Ratings agencies, including Moody’s and Fitch, have responded favourably to the government’s decision to increase guarantees for Eskom debt to a total of R350-billion, up from R176-billion. Lowering risk profile “We hope that this trend will persist as other state-owned enterprises approach the market to raise funds for their capital expansion programmes, as this will serve to reduce pressure on the fiscus,” Dames said, adding that completion of the utility’s build programme was critical for ensuring security of electricity supply in South Africa.last_img read more

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USMCA on Backburner Now?

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Jerry HagstromDTN Political CorrespondentWASHINGTON (DTN) — After months of campaigning for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump could derail the trade deal.The White House and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley, R-Iowa, signaled Tuesday that the House Democrats’ impeachment inquiry might mean that Congress will not take up approval of USMCA.Grassley said, “If Democrats use impeachment proceedings as a basis to not act on policy that will directly benefit Americans like the USMCA or lowering prescription drug prices, that would prove they’re more interested in politics and opposing the president at all costs than serving the American people.”Stephanie Grisham, the White House press secretary, issued a statement that, “In a far departure from all of the work and results of this president, House Democrats have destroyed any chances of legislative progress for the people of this country by continuing to focus all their energy on partisan political attacks.”“Their attacks on the president and his agenda are not only partisan and pathetic, they are in dereliction of their constitutional duty,” Grisham said.Just over the past two weeks, farm groups and former secretaries of Agriculture had held events in Washington encouraging House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., to bring the new trade deal to the floor. Agricultural groups see USMCA boosting exports to Canada and stabilizing trade with Mexico, two of the top markets for agricultural exports.The vast majority of Democrats on the House Agriculture agree with Pelosi’s decision to begin a formal impeachment inquiry against the president, but House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson, D-Minn., said that he fears the impeachment inquiry will be “a failed process.”In a statement from his personal office, Peterson said, “I believe it will be a failed process that will end up even further dividing our country and weakening our ability to act together on issues like passing USMCA [proposed U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement on trade], containing foreign threats and growing our economy.”Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-Va., a freshman who chairs the House Agriculture Conservation and Forestry Subcommittee, was among the seven freshmen from moderate swing districts who led Pelosi announce the impeachment inquiry.Spanberger, a former Central Intelligence Agency officer, and six other House freshmen wrote an opinion column published in The Washington Post charging that if Trump used his position to pressure the government of Ukraine to investigate former Vice President Joe Biden, these actions “represent an impeachable offense.”The Cook Political Report has declared Peterson’s re-election race to be a toss-up. David Wasserman, the Cook Report House editor, said the organization also ranks Spanberger’s re-election race as a toss-up.The New York Times reports 205 members of the House of Representatives support the inquiry, all but one are Democrats. The list of those supporting the inquiry includes a number of members of the House Agriculture Committee.Spanberger represents suburban and rural areas west of Richmond. The House leadership’s decision to make her a subcommittee chair was unusual for a freshman and viewed as a way to shore up her support.Of the 26 Democrats on the House Agriculture Committee, at least 20 have announced their support for the impeachment inquiry.Jerry Hagstrom can be reached at jhagstrom@njdc.comFollow him on Twitter @hagstromreport(CC/BAS)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Supreme Court to hear pleas against Article 35 A after Diwali

first_imgThe Supreme Court on Friday agreed to hear after Diwali pleas challenging Article 35 A, relating to special rights and privileges of permanent residents of Jammu and Kashmir.A bench headed by Justice J.S. Khehar accepted the plea of the Jammu and Kashmir state government that the pleas challenging Article 35 A be heard after Diwali.Senior advocate Rakesh Dwivedi and Advocate Shoeb Alam mentioned the matter before a bench also comprising Justices Dipak Misra and D.Y. Chandrachud that even the Centre has no objection if the pleas are taken up after Diwali.“All the pleas will be taken up for hearing after Diwali,” the bench said.Earlier the apex court had favoured hearing of the matter by a five-judge constitution bench in case the Article is ultra vires of the Constitution or if there is any procedural lapse.The court had said that a three-judge bench will hear the matter and refer it to a five-judge bench if necessary.The apex court was hearing a plea filed by Charu Wali Khanna challenging Article 35A of the Constitution and Section 6 of the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution which deal with the “permanent residents” of the state.The plea has challenged certain provisions of the Constitution which deny property right to a woman who marries a person from outside the state. The provision, which makes such women from the State lose rights over property, also applies to her son.Article 35A, which was added to the Constitution by a Presidential Order in 1954, accords special rights and privileges to the citizens of the Jammu and Kashmir.It also empowers the State’s legislature to frame any law without attracting a challenge on grounds of violating the Right to Equality of people from other states or any other right under the Indian Constitution.“Section 6 of the Jammu and Kashmir Constitution restricts the basic right of women to marry a man of their choice by not giving the heirs any right to property if the woman marries a man not holding the Permanent Resident Certificate.“Her children are denied a permanent resident certificate thereby considering them illegitimate — not given any right to such a woman’s property even if she is a permanent resident of Jammu and Kashmir,” the plea said.While Jammu and Kashmir’s Non-Permanent Resident Certificate holders can vote in Lok Sabha elections, the same individual is barred to vote in local elections in the State.last_img read more

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Letran, Arellano stay in F4 hunt

first_imgTyphoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH View comments Rey Nambatac. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/ INQUIRER.netThere was no way Rey Nambatac was leaving Letran with a stunning defeat.Nambatac, who is set to turn pro late this month, bailed the Knights out with crucial baskets down the stretch for a thrilling 66-60 victory over the St. Benilde Blazers that forged a playoff for a Final Four berth in NCAA Season 93 basketball tournament on Tuesday.ADVERTISEMENT Read Next But a loss by the Stags will make the showdown between Arellano and Letran on Friday the decider for the last Final Four spot. Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles02:11’Not just basketball’: Circumcisions, pageants at Philippine courts00:50Trending Articles01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games Nonong Araneta re-elected as PFF president Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC BSP sees higher prices in November, but expects stronger peso, low rice costs to put up fight The lefty guard finished with 18 points, including a three-point play with 20 seconds remaining that helped the Knights finish with a 9-9 record at the end of the elimination round.“I have some unfinished business with Letran,” said Nambatac.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutout“I want to make the Final Four then the finals and hopefully get a championship again. I’m not thinking that this was my last game. I just went all out as soon as I entered the court.”With Arellano beating Mapua, 81-64, earlier to also finish with a 9-9 record, the Chiefs and Knights will face off in a stepladder playoff for the last Final Four spot in the event that San Sebastian prevails over Perpetual Help this Thursday.center_img MOST READ Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa LOOK: Loisa Andalio, Ronnie Alonte unwind in Amanpulo for 3rd anniversary Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LATEST STORIES Fire hits houses in Mandaluyong City Frontrow holds fun run to raise funds for young cancer patients  Surging Ateneo eyes repeat vs NUlast_img read more

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Gilas shakes off Japan to start World Cup qualifiers campaign

first_imgPhilippines guard Jayson Castro. Photo from Fiba.comWith Gilas Pilipinas still groping for form, coach Chot Reyes went to his old reliable Jayson Castro as the Philippines held off Japan, 77-71, to start its campaign in the Asian qualifiers of the 2019 Fiba World Cup Friday at Komazawa Olympic Park General Sports Gymnasium in Tokyo.Castro provided some semblance of stability for the Philippine side which struggled to get its bearing on the offensive end and lost grip of an early 14-point lead.ADVERTISEMENT Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice LATEST STORIES View comments Naturalized player Ira Brown chimed in 10 markers and 15 boards for Japan, while Daiki Tanaka also had 10 points on a 3-of-4 sniping from threes in the loss.The Scores:PHILIPPINES 77 – Castro William 20, Blatche 13, Wright 12, Norwood 10, Fajardo 6, Aguilar 5, Abueva 5, Pogoy 5, Ravena 1, Alas 0, Rosario 0.JAPAN 71 – Hiejima 20, Brown 10, Tanaka 10, Togashi 8, Baba 7, Harimoto 7, Shinoyama 4, J. Takeuchi 3, Ota 2, Furukawa 0, Uto 0.Quarters: 18-10, 37-28, 59-55, 77-71. Read Next Ravena vows ‘composed’ Ateneo come Finals against La Salle Castro also went 3-of-5 from three, halting the Philippines’ dry spell from downtown after missing its first eight attempts.Gabe Norwood added 10 points, seven rebounds, and four assists, while Matthew Wright had 12 markers on a perfect 7-of-7 shooting from the charity stripe.Reyes also drew huge contributions from substitutes June Mar Fajardo and Roger Pogoy. The four-time PBA MVP pumped six points and three rebounds but was a plus-eight on his time on the floor, while the reigning Rookie of the Year got two huge defensive stops in the final minute to diffuse Japan’s late rally to go with his five-point output.Gilas Pilipinas will now fly home to face Chinese Taipei on Monday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.Makoto Hiejima was sensational for the Akatsuki Five as he paced his side with 20 points, five rebounds, and five assists.ADVERTISEMENT Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC The veteran guard fired 20 points, six assists, and seven rebounds, including five of the last seven points for Gilas, none bigger than a trey with 1:14 remaining that took the air out of the home team.With the defense clicking, Gilas jumpedto a 16-4 start which ballooned to a 24-10 advantage early in the second period.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutBut Philippines was hobbled by shooting woes and allowed its 37-28 halftime lead go down the drain with 12-0 blast from the the Japanese, who took a 40-37 edge midway in the third quarter.Gilas, though, just had enough in the gas tank as Andray Blatche eventually found his mark and paired with Castro in the end game. The naturalized center went for 13 markers, 12 boards, five dimes, three steals, and three blocks. Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READlast_img read more

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Chot Reyes underscores importance of tune-up games for Gilas’ World Cup bid

first_imgColombia protesters vow new strike after talks hit snag MOST READ Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Miguel Romero Polo: Bamboo technology like no other Speaking to reporters during the PBA’s lull on Wednesday night, Reyes recalled Gilas’ participation in a couple of tuneup games that helped them prepare for the prestigious global contest.READ: Chot Reyes likes Gilas’ chances in 2019World Cup: ‘We have proven we can compete’FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logistics“[Those games] really toughened us up,” he said. “That was a big factor and hopefully coach Yeng (Guiao’s) team gets a chance as well,” he added.Gilas played Ukraine, Australia, France, Venezuela and Dominican Republic in a battery of friendlies to prepare for the 2014 edition of the games in Seville, Spain. Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Trump tells impeachment jokes at annual turkey pardon event Google Philippines names new country director “I know there are some challenges with the schedule but with the [league] throwing its all-out support? I think it’s [going to be] important,” Reyes said.Reyes said it is imperative for Gilas to generate something similar as it could help with the players’ headspace.“They should have a good feeling about themselves that they can compete with anybody,” he said.Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next SEA Games hosting troubles anger Dutertecenter_img Trending Articles PLAY LIST 00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss San Beda knocks out Jalen Green, FilAm Sports to advance to NBTC semis View comments Wintry storm delivers US travel woes before Thanksgiving Bloomberg: US would benefit from more, not fewer, immigrants Coming into Group B play as overwhelming underdogs, the Philippines played Greece, and then put up valiant stands against Croatia, Argentina and Puerto Rico. They finally eked out a victory—their only one in the campaign—versus Senegal.“We kept on losing. But at least we tried to level with them,” Reyes said in Filipino. “Our players felt that they were improving and getting stronger as we progressed. And I think that feeling spilled over into the World Cup.”READ: Chot Reyes steps down as PH men’s basketball team coach “When they got into the actual games, the players had a very good feeling about themselves,” he added.Earlier this month, the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas (SBP) said that Gilas will be skipping the Jones Cup—a perennial training ground for the country for years—due to conflicts in schedule. But the federation said they are looking to compensate by hosting pocket tournaments.ADVERTISEMENT Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netWhile Chot Reyes is optimistic with the Philippines’ chances in the of the FIBA World Cup, he couldn’t stress enough the importance of preparation.Gilas Pilipinas has over five months to gear up the squad and Reyes hopes that the current iteration of the National team could be afforded with an opportunity to generate edge—just like what his squad had nearly five years ago.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIESlast_img read more

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Chievo coach adores Udinese goalkeeper Simone Scuffet

first_imgChievo Coach Lorenzo D’Anna has showered praises on the Udinese goalkeeper Simone Scuffet, calling his performance excellent as he was able to stop his side from getting back into the game.Rodrigo De Paul strike and Kevin Lasagna counter-attack led to Udinese 2-0 victory at Stadio Bentegodi.“It was a very even first half, while in the second we conceded a goal out of nowhere with that shot from 30 metres out just as we were pushing the hardest,” D’Anna told Rai Sport via Football Italia.VERONA, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 02: Lorenzo D'Anna head coach of Chievo looks on during the serie A match between Chievo Verona and Empoli at Stadio Marc'Antonio Bentegodi on September 2, 2018 in Verona, Italy. (Photo by Alessandro Sabattini/Getty Images)Lorenzo D’Anna: Chievo kept their focus Obinna Echi – September 16, 2018 Lorenzo D’Anna hailed the resolve of his players as they fought back to rescue a point in their 2-2 stalemate against Roma.The Flying Donkeys didn’t…“We reacted well and created many chances, but unfortunately a combination of our mistakes and the excellent performance of the goalkeeper stopped us getting back into the game.“Chievo put in the performance we needed to and a win would’ve shaken off this minus mark from our table, but we tried our best against a difficult side that countered dangerously.”The Flying Donkeys are on -2 points in the Serie A table at the moment as they were docked three points for false accounting.last_img read more

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Dominican fishermen plead guilty in Bahamas court in illegal fishing bust by

first_img POACHERS FAMILY CONCERNED ABOUT SCABIES Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApp Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppNASSAU, Bahamas – December 5, 2017 – It is unclear if The Bahamas will also confiscate two boats caught up in an illegal fishing operation, thwarted by the Defense Force just before Thanksgiving.Two men from the group caught illegally fishing near Bimini say they are guilty and were fined.  The Royal Bahamas Defence Force reports that two Dominican men, Rialerky Lantigua and Yordi Andujar were charged before the courts with possession of prohibited apparatuses for fishing purposes, with dive compressors.  The men plead guilty and were each fined two thousand dollars ($2000.00). Their bail was set and the matter was adjourned until February.It was on November 23rd, that 45 fishermen aboard two Bahamian registered fishing vessels were caught three miles east of Bimini. The vessels, “SRJ” and “Black Bahamian”, were captained by Stephon Green and Vernal Johnson respectively. The crew, consisting of 16 Bahamians, 23 Dominicans and six Haitians, was taken into custody after being found in possession of illegal fishing apparatus, namely diving compressors.Also found on board the vessels were a large quantity of fisheries product. The vessels and crew were brought into the Capital and turned over to the relevant authorities.Magistrate Joanne Ferguson Pratt said she would also make a ruling whether the vessels would be released, as there were no charges against them and the captain. Related Items:#dominicanpoachers, #illegalfishing, #joyannefergusonpratt Recommended for youlast_img read more

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New York Philadelphia End Veteran Homelessness

first_img Dan Cohen AUTHOR With the Obama administration’s target for eliminating veteran homelessness fast approaching, several major cities — along with a number of counties and smaller cities — in recent weeks announced they had set up systems and had resources in place to ensure all veterans experiencing chronic homelessness are either housed or are on an immediate path to permanent housing.Last week, New York Mayor Bill de Blasio announced the city had reached that goal after a two-year effort involving city agencies, the federal government and several nonprofit organizations serving veterans.“Today we have ensured that those in the veteran community who have struggled to find and remain in housing time and time again will have a stable place to call home,” de Blasio said according to a press release.Earlier in December, Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter said his city had effectively ended veteran homelessness. In both cities, a handful of veterans remain on the streets after refusing housing assistance.“I have a message for each of you who are still out there,” Nutter said during his Dec. 17 announcement, reported the Philadelphia Inquirer. “We honor your service and your sacrifices. You deserve a home. We won’t give up on you.”Over the past year, a number of cities have met President Obama’s challenge to end veteran homelessness by the end of 2015. As of late December, the Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) had officially recognized 15 jurisdictions that have succeeded, including Houston, Las Vegas and New Orleans. In November, Virginia declared that it had become the first state to meet the federal definition of ending homelessness among veterans.HUD recently acknowledged that the administration’s end-of-the-year deadline for eliminating veteran homelessness nationwide would not be met, but officials highlighted the 36 percent drop in the number of homeless veterans over the past five years.“The thing is that we can’t stop our work until every single veteran has a place to call home in the United States. That means that you have a role to play in teaching other communities how you did it,” HUD Secretary Julián Castro said prior to Philadelphia’s announcement in December.For some veterans advocates, ending veteran homelessness as defined by the federal government still leaves more to be accomplished.“This is a great example of spiking the ball before you cross the goal line,” Paul Rieckhoff, president of the Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America, told the Observer following last week’s announcement in New York. “There’s been tremendous progress, but there’s still a long way to go — and there’s a big difference between ending chronic homelessness and ending functional homelessness and ending real homelessness,” Rieckhoff said.last_img read more

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